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ABC World News With Diane Sawyer

News/Business. Diane Sawyer. (2012) New. (CC)




San Francisco, CA, USA

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Abc 10, Holmes 10, London 5, James Holmes 5, Sally 4, Nasa 3, Warfarin 3, Colorado 3, Nexium 3, Us 3, Jeffrey Kofman 2, Penn 2, Diane 2, Washington 2, Diarrhea 2, Dan Abrams 2, Pierre Thomas 2, Astrazeneca 2, Olympics 2, Centrum 2,
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  ABC    ABC World News With Diane Sawyer    News/Business. Diane  
   Sawyer.  (2012) New. (CC)  

    July 23, 2012
    5:30 - 6:00pm PDT  

reach for the stars too. good evening. we begin with that bizarre scene in a colorado courtroom today. james holmes, the 24-year-old suspect, appearing in court just four days after he allegedly opened fire in a movie theater. the flame red hair, the dazed look. in the front row, parents and friends of the victims, studying his face. the father-in-law of one of the victims said he looked demonic. david muir has covered this story since the first bulletin and he is outside the courtroom. david? >> reporter: as you know, so many families told me they want to focus on the survivors, the victims hire. but today, a community did pause to stare down a gunman face to
face. the guards on the courthouse as james holmes was walked in an under ground tunnel to the courtroom. and the victims, heads down. and a woman on crutches, a couple arm in arm. this is what they saw. james holmes, his hair still died that comic book color. his eyes at times, exaggerated, wide open. offering a stunned expression. other times, seeming to struggle to keep them open to stay awake. >> you have a right to know the charges. >> reporter: also, was the suspect on medication. there was moments when he went from one extreme to the other. his bulging eyes and his head dropping. we asked former fbi agent brad garrett to watch it and tell us what he was seeing. >> he is not in the courtroom mentality. he is elsewhere. he is in a reality that he that he created. there is a combination of the reality of what happened to him has set in. what it has done to himself and as well as the victims.
>> reporter: after james holmes was in court, the prosecutor was asked if he was on something. >> we would have no information about that. >> reporter: the other question, will she pursue the death penalty? she said she will ask the victims' families first. >> if the death penalty is sought, it's a long process that impacts their lives for years. >> reporter: david sanchez said his daughter nearly escaped the theater. her husband shot in the head, in a coma. this morning, her daughter asked him to go to court. >> you felt your daughter needed to come. >> when it's your own daughter, and she escaped from death by just mere seconds, i would say it makes you angry. >> what do you say is the punishment for this guy? >> death. >> reporter: the suspect's family in california through their attorney reiterating their sorrow for the victims. the attorney says this about james holmes' parents, who watched their son go from this at age 18 to this. >> i think everyone can imagine
how they are feeling. anyone who has ever been a parent. >> reporter: as the courtroom scene unfolded today, across town a blessing. a mother and daughter shot, the 6-year-old girl not surviving. ashley moser, turns out, was pregnant. she was hit twice in the abdomen. tonight, the unborn baby survived. that family calling it a miracle tonight in a community that could sure use one, diane. >> thank you, david. i want to bring in abc's legal analyst dan abrams. we studied this tape all day, watching the scene in the courtroom. tell me about that red hair, described by terror by the survivors. whose decision would that have been to show up like this? >> certainly his. i mean, this is likely how he was arrested. what he looked like at the time. >> he could have changed it, right? >> why would he want to? he was dressed up at the scene, this is someone who was dressed
up at the scene, like the killer with a weapon. you start to think his most likely defense is a mental defect. why would you want to make him suddenly seem more sane? with that said, i think his his lawyers are just getting to know him now and there is no reason to make a change. >> the prosecutors refusing to comment on any medication. but would a prison give sedation? >> typically, a prison will give a medication if they are already taking, they absolutely need. and they certainly couldn't give him medication to look like that. you have a number of options here. he is extremely tired, he's got serious mental defect or he is faking it. and that is ultimately what a court and a jury have to determine. >> the first determination will be competency to stand trial. we saw the lawyer goes over to him. an apparent conversation with him. >> they said they advised him of his rights. before we talk about what kind of defense he is going to pursue
the first question, does he understand the proceedings? can they pursue the case against him? is he competent to understand that? that is a low standard. the question, can you talk to your lawyers? do you understand what is going on? and that will be the first question when it comes to his mental state. >> as they study his mind, thank you, dan abrams. and investigators are piecing together a time line, trying to track the story of the suspected shooter. a student in the deadly downward spiral. dan harris spent the day looking for clues about how and why he changed. dan. >> reporter: good evening to you from the crime screen that is james holmes' former opponent. tonight, we are getting a picture of the young man and his astonishing metamorphosis. >> reporter: this video of james holmes at a summer science camp six years ago betrays no hint of the mayhem to come. >> he enjoys playing soccer and strategy games. his dream is to own a slurpee machine.
>> reporter: you sigh a promising scientific mind and glimpses of humor. >> a game of rock, paper, scissors. >> reporter: and it is this james holmes, so far from the flamed-haired, dead-eyes, alleged mass murderer that people we spoke to today remember. regrew up comfortably in san diego, his mom a nurse, his father, a manager at a software company. according to his 5th grade teacher. >> he was a top student. everything he did, he excelled academically. >> reporter: his high school friends say the same things. >> i remember him as a smart individual. >> reporter: in the fall of 2006 holmes enrolled at university of california riverside, majoring in neuroscience. graduating with honors. in the fall of 2011 he enrolled at university of colorado, denver for a phd. and it was here for reasons that remain unknown that the trouble appears to have begun. four months ago, police say holmes went on a shopping spree buying guns, ammo and explosives.
on june 10th, holmes sent an e-mail to campus officials saying he was dropping out, no explanation. >> it's very unusual, very unusual, for a student to withdraw from a program. >> reporter: on july 19th he bought a ticket to the midnight showing of batman, and the next day the rampage. today we learned that not only was holmes receiving a federal grant for the education. but as part of that grant, he was getting $26,000 a year in spending money. which, raises the real possibility that he was using our tax dollars for his weapons. >> $26,000 a year, that is the question. how did he afford the guns, the ammunition, the explosives in the booby trapped apartment? police finally gave the all clear over the weekend on the apartment. tonight, abc's pierre thomas has news on what he bought and the way anyone can buy thousands of rounds of ammunition no questions asked. >> reporter: abc news has learned today that authorities
suspect if all had gone according to the suspect's plan, the bombs in his apartment would have blown out the walls of his residence and possibly burned down the entire building. this fireball was created when police disposed of only part of the death trap. police had to overcome a room full of bombs and a spaghetti jumble of wires. once finally inside, police discovered evidence of an apparent obsession with batman. according to sources, among paraphernalia, according to sources, a batman mask and a batman poster. but the most curial item found, a computer. police hope it will be the key to unlocking why holmes went on his murderous rampage. but today, many are left to wonder how holmes bought $15000 worth of guns, s.w.a.t. gear and rounds of ammunition. i wanted to buy tactical gear, i could go online and buy armor, whatever i wanted.
most states, it's just as easy. he bought 6,000 rounds on this site. i'm trying to buy ten times that amount. 60,000 rounds of ammo for an assault rifle. i am up to payment information and i haven't had to look anyone in the eye. sites like these are not required to notify authorities of such purchases. sources tell abc news holmes was able to purchase s.w.a.t. gear identical to that of police. one official described the difference as negligible. police say holmes was wearing one item that was different from police but won't say what that item was. it was the eagle eyes of two officers who noticed the different item and made the arrest ending the nightmare. >> and made the difference. thank you. pierre thomas, also reporting the story four straight days. thank you. now we move on to other big news today. the unprecedented punishment against the penn state football program for failing to protect children from sexual abuse from
coach jerry sandusky. abc's senior national correspondent jim avila lays out the decision by the ncaa. >> reporter: the joe paterno legacy crumbling. his 900-pound bronze statue already again. and punishing him in the grave. snatching back 112 wins, everything since the scandal began. the last official victory. 1998. the quarterback that day, mike mcqueary, the key witness in his downfall. adding to the sting of dropping to first in college football wins to 12th. >> they shouldn't take the wins away. >> reporter: the ncaa imposing a painful fine of $60 million. but it's the sanctions against the once-proud program that hit penn state the hardest. no lucrative high exposure bowl games for four years. ten fewer scholarships per year.
stunned players seen leaves a team meeting today will be allowed to transfer immediately without penalty as the formerly nittany lions are less than competitive. a wake-up call to all of college sports. >> football will never again will placed ahead of educating, nurturing and protecting young people. >> reporter: perhaps paying the highest price today, former players who now have no victories in the record books. now winless quarterback michael robinson telling espn by phone -- >> jerry was a sick man. i just don't think our program is defined by the actions of one sick individual. >> reporter: today, university officials promise that no taxpayer money will be used to pay the $60 million fine. and that none of that money will go to waste, that the other 80,000 students here will not be suffering, their education will not suffer. diane? >> still a jolt to the program there. thank you so much, jim.
and now a terrible car crash in texas. a pickup crash crammed with 23 people ran off the road and slammed into trees, killing at least 14 of them, among them, three children. police on the scene called it the worst traffic accident they had ever encountered. the truck had just crossed from mexico. officials believe all the passengers were immigrating illegally. still ahead, take a look as thieves steal a purse. and pickpocket this unsuspecting man. a new warning about pickpockets at the olympics and the tricks they could use on anyone anywhere. [ male announcer ] this is rudy. his morning starts with arthritis pain. and two pills. afternoon's overhaul starts with more pain. more pills. triple checking hydraulics. the evening brings more pain. so, back to more pills.
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his partner distracts her, asks for change and gone. he nabs her purse and disappears. now, watch again as he stuffs the purse under his coat. watch that guy in the hotel lobby. he is about to be robbed as he leans to tinker with his suitcase. his bag with all of his belongings disappears. here in london as the olympics get under way, the officials are bracing for tourists and thieves who prey on them. they raided this house, rented by a group of thieves from romania. part of a crackdown. >> we know the addresses they are using. we will come through the door and if you are going in, you will be arrested. >> reporter: with more and more olympic tourists arriving each day, there are more and more targets. that guy's wallet, that backpack, that purse. but you don't have to be here in london to be the victim.
this expert showed abc news one method that might surprise you. he sprays the victim but what he says are bird droppings. she is so distracted, she hands him her purse. >> it's intriguing. they are good. they are at various levels of sophistication how they can dig in and quickly find out the easiest prey. >> reporter: the best advice, whether in london for the games or just heading on vacation, keep your eyes open, wallets close and your purses closed. jeffrey kofman, abc news, london. coming up, watch this, a tsunami of ice hurtling for a boat of tourists. what happened next when we come back. to the american people. .but washington isn't talkg [ female announcer ] when it comes to the future of medicare and social security, you've earned the right to know. ♪ what does it mean for you and your family? [ female announcer ] you've earned the facts. ♪ washington may not like straight talk, but i do.
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they were admiring a glacier and watch this. a sheet of ice twice the size of manhattan sheers off, crumbles into the ocean and sends a tsunami of water and ice crushing to the boat. the captain guns it to avoid the wave. listen. >> wow, this is the wildest thing i have ever tried in my life. i have never been this close to dying before. >> it was a narrow escape but no one was injured. one survivor said mother nature doesn't care about anyone. and this day almost became our last. from one snowy challenge to another, look at the postcard. congresswoman gabby giffords on the top of the french alps with her husband. she hitched a ride to the tap on a cable car but braved sub zero temperatures to take the steps up to 12,600 feet. proof for her, there ain't no mountain high enough.
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and finally, a true american pioneer died today of cancer. sally ride, the first american woman to fly in space, it was nearly 30 years ago. there was towering pressure on her to perform every maneuver perfectly, and she did. proving that women were also born with the right stuff. here abc's linsey davis. >> reporter: when sally ride blasted into space in 1983 -- >> lifeoff, america's first woman astronaut. >> reporter: -- she not only boldly went where no american woman had gone before, at 31, she also became the youngest american to be in space. >> i was getting excited about a chance to fly early. than i was about being the first woman. >> reporter: the stars all seemed to be aligned. ride was a phd physics student at sanford and saw an ad in a
college newspaper, an ad that changed her trajectory. it said that nasa was looking for scientists to work on a new project, the same year that nasa started accepting women in the nasa training program. 35 for chosen and six were women. ride was the one tapped to go to space in "the challenger." prompting a flood of media coverage. >> it's an experience of a lifetime to fly in space aboard the space shuttle. i'm more excited about that opportunity than i am about that -- as you said, a footnote in history. >> reporter: sally ride ultimately took the trip twice on "the challenger" in back-to-back years. her third trip was canceled after the disaster in 1986. she went on to inspire women in science. her example alone encouraged women to shoot for the moon.
linsey davis, abc news, new york. >> she was 61. this is what her biography said. in an instant, little girls learned that even the sky wasn't the limit. we thank you for watching. always here at "nightline" will be up here later and i will see you back here tomorrow night. good night. >>. next the president has. >> i fund raising hopes. we have live team coverage.
>> high hopes of another kind. medical marijuana supporters light up during the campaign visit. >> and for the first time, we're seeing accused colorado theater killer, james holmes. and we will be live from the court house. >> a couple found shot to death in their home. where their three children were sleeping. >> cash keeps them coming back. and good evening, everyone, i'm carolyn johnson. >> here is a look at where the president is right now. this is his motorcade. and there is a home in piedmont for an intimate and expensive fund raising dinner tonight. >> we have abc 7 news on the
protests but first going to mark matthews outside of the president's biggest events. mark? >> there is 20th and telegraph. you can see the crowd starting to gather about a block from the fox theater and you can bet one day after meeting with families of the victims in colorado gun violence will be on his mind and there is experts tell us don't expect him to talk about tighter gun control. the president hasn't said it but his press secretary told reporters the president thinks existing gun laws are adequate that. is not what senator feinstein thinks. she and others stepped up the call for bans on assault weapons. >> my thoughts are this. pure and simple. weapons of war don't belong on the streets.